Some Books I Like…

I have had several families appreciate input on what books to read before your new family member arrives.

Here are some I like:

The Havanese was written by a veterinarian who used to breed and show Havanese dogs


How to Speak Dog is a fun but informative book about communicating with your canine family member. Modern Dog Parenting has a wonderful approach to training your new puppy.

Dr. Pitcairn has included dozens of recipes for hand made dog food should you be so inclined. But this is a great reference book for many health issues that can come up. And, he has a holistic approach which I like.

Joyous Havanese was written by Kitty Braund and is very helpful. I got my first Havanese, Phoebe, from Kitty. It was her last litter as she was approaching 90 years young. Phoebe is my heart dog…just turned 10!

Catching up With Hermoine

We are back in Florida now and I had the lovely opportunity to catch up with Hermoine, who is now Meisha, and her parents Linda and Steve. I am happy to report they are one very happy family. We had a nice chat that covered everything from grooming tips to food to socializing and “obedience” training. Nothing serious, mind you!

Anyway here are some pix from our visit.

This is one of my favorite parts of breeding. Nothing better than seeing the little ones you were responsible for bringing into this world and knowing they have found the very best family!

It’s Early But….

I know it is early, but this is a good time for my families to get some basic equipment for the new addition! That way you can spend more time with your puppy when he arrives.

1. Carrier (to bring your puppy home)
                  If you plan to travel on an airplane with your Havanese it is wise to purchase a sturdy carrier that is airline approved and will fit under the seat of your airplane. I do not allow my puppies to travel as cargo in the belly of the airplane. Get a carrier that will be large enough for your puppy when he is full grown. Plan to spend about $30-50. Sherpa is a good brand.
2. Harness and leash
                  Because a Havanese puppy is so small, I don’t recommend collars. The size harness you will want will be extra small (up to 4 pound pup) or small (4-8 pound pup). I actually don’t use collars even on my older dogs. Harnesses are much easier on their necks.
3.  Crate
                  I recommend the open wire crates with a removable floor (for cleaning) and a divider that will create a smaller space for sleeping until the pup is completely housebroken. A crate appropriate for a 15 pound dog is more than sufficient. Any larger gives the pup too much space inside.
4. Confinement during the day
                  There are a lot of wire and plastic pens on the market that you can use to keep your puppy confined when you are in a different room or out of the house. My latest favorite is the IRIS 4 panel hard plastic pen. It is easier on my hardwood floors.  It comes with 4 domed panels and rods that connect them. They come with or without doors. I don’t really use the doors and they are usually less expensive without them. You can also purchase extra panels, which gives your puppy a little more room. I‘d put the puppy’s crate with his bed inside this pen so he can come and go as he pleases. Put his potty box outside the sleeping crate but inside the pen.
5. Food bowls.
                  Ceramic or stainless steel are best. Puppies will chew plastic ones. Smaller is good (5” max) as the older pup’s ears will likely land outside the bowl (and the food).
6. Food
                  Your puppy has been eating  Back to Basics, Open Range Formula.  They also enjoy Taste of the Wild, Prairie Puppy Formula. I get both online at I also recommend Wellness Super Mix Just for Puppy (most pet stores) or Natural Balance Puppy to Adult.
Puppies are used to three meals a day…about 1/4-1/3 cup per meal.
7. Toys
                  Havanese love their toys! Lots of toys keep their interest away from furniture, cords and shoes! Tough rubber toys for teething are critical, especially the small “Kong” toys that you can stuff with yogurt and freeze. Squeaky toys are good too. Just don’t spend a lot on these squeaky toys as they pup will likely dismember it in a few weeks! And soft, floppy toys that they can tug and shake are also good.
8. Pottying
                  Your puppy is trained to use a litter box. I use tin lasagna pans from the grocery store with pellets made from either saw dust or grain husks. Brands I like are Eco-Straw, Yesterdays News or GreenPet Aspen Supreme Pellets. If you are lucky enough to have a farm supply store near you (Tractors Supply, etc.), you can buy the large bags of pine sawdust pellets used as horse bedding. Don’t use kitty litter!
As your puppy gets accustomed to your house you can easily transition him to pottying outdoors. I recommend you spread a layer of the same pellets, ideally “used” ones, where you want him to potty and take him to the same spot every time.
9. Teething
                  Get 5-6” long Nylabones or the nylon bristle bones. Do not use rawhide chews for puppies and always supervise your puppy when he is chewing any kind of bones.
10. Mistakes
                  Have Natures Miracle spray on hand. It is an enzyme cleaner that does a pretty good job eliminating both stains and odors.There are all kinds of sizes as well as special formulas for hardwood floors, laundry, etc. I blot up any mistakes thoroughly with paper towel. Then spray Nature’s Miracle, let it sit a couple minutes then blot it up thoroughly. Finally, spray the area with white vinegar and, after it sits a minute or two, blot that up.
11. Grooming:
                  Your puppy is used to having his nails trimmed. I do this to reduce their angst down the road. You can use a human nail clipper for now…the kind that clip from the side are good. Later you will need a regular dog nail trimmer.
                  A mini pin brush work best for general grooming.  Again, your puppy is used to this and it is a good idea to continue to brush him 2-3 times a week if only for a few minutes.
                  Bathing supplies should include shampoo, conditioner and detangler. For the first two, I actually use Tresemee’ brand that you can find in most grocery and drug stores. For the detangler I use Christensen’s Ice on Ice Detangler which can be purchased online.  For their little faces I use a tearless puppy shampoo diluted 1:1 with water. You can use this daily after meals.

Some Havanese Puppy Updates

From time to time I’m fortunate enough to get photos of my fur babies. Here are just a few along with notes from their happy owners!

Dear Jacqui

We thought you would be interested in Sammy’s progression over the last couple of weeks.
He has quickly adjusted to our house and has himself quite comfortable.
Sadie our Wheaton is reluctant to play and tries to ignore him as much as possible.
Sammy goes for walks with Sadie and has already become familiar with the street.
He went to the vet and weighed in a little over 4 lbs and is in good health and spirit.
Sammy, iS quite smart and has at times surprised us with his knowledge.
He is certainly teething and is nipping at everything.
We hope all is well with you.

Jim and Judi

There’s just no getting a non-blurry photo of Sammy. He’s a wild one!


We are back in Vermont and Lily is terrific. She is loosing her baby teeth for which I am most thankful and she is house broken and comes most of the time and sits consistently. She is of course brilliant.  I have a great shampoo that needs no cream rinse or detangler and is sugar based as opposed to detergent/soap based. She gets a weekly bath. I have not had her trimmed and not sure anyone around here has even seen a havanese much less trimmed one. Would appreciate a good book on grooming a havanese if you can suggest one.

Not sure if I wrote previously but Lily had a spot on the inside of a front leg that the vet thought might be a allergic reaction; but hindsight would say it may have been the halter breast piece rubbing on her. The vet did suggest that since her mother had a chicken allergy I should avoid chicken and stick with the food you had started the puppies on. Evidently chicken is one of the things that many dogs react to and so much of the food has chicken in it.

I have some pictures of Lily that are on my iPhone so will send them separate from this email. Hoe all of her litter mates are doing well and that the new litter also. Lily has certainly proved the puppy psychological profile wrong. She is wild about strangers and goes up to anyone. Very confident and outgoing. I can only guess that she was having a bad day when the testing was done.  Again Lily is doing very well and we are both so happy with her. Susan

I’m afraid Lily is getting terribly spoiled!


We are most definitely enjoying the 20+  inches of snow! 

Please feel free to share my email . . I love talking about my girls to anyone who will listen.

Here are some pics that I had on my ipad…sorry about the first email I sent it by mistake while trying to upload the photos! 

Fondly,  Wendy

This family loved Breezy so much they got Chloe from us a year later! They are best buddies!

Hi Jacquie

We are crazy about this dog.  You did GOOD, he is loved by everyone who meets him.  Today he got his summer cut — Mr FredD Spiderman!  He is almost two and such a riot.

Thanks again.  Enjoy the summer.


These three are FredD. Don’t you just love his puppy cut in the middle photo?

Hi, Jackie.

Hope you are doing well. Everything here is going great!

Here is a picture of Nattie at 16 weeks. She got her final set of shots yesterday and weighed 7.7 pounds! She’s happy as can be and just so much fun to have around! As the vet says, “she got the happy gene!” We take her for walks in Old Town Alexandria and she loves everybody and everyone loves her. Housebreaking is going really well. She’s very smart and has it pretty much figured out. We have been training her on our own and it’s amazing how fast she learns. We also enrolled her in “Puppy Head Start” with a trainer and she’s an A student. We just love her!

The vet asked me to ask you a couple of questions — do you know if anyone in her line is allergic to Lepto? Since we have a weekend place that is on a river, the vet is concerned about waterborne illnesses and wants us to consider the Lepto vaccine. She says that some dogs have shown an allergic reaction and suggested I ask you. The other question is at what age have your female puppies gone into heat? She says it’s generally at 6 months but was wondering what your experience has been with Nattie’s line.


This is Nattie!

 In answer to some of Wendy’s questions, Lepto is a virus to be taken quite seriously. It is spread through the urine of animals like raccoons, rats, deer, etc and can be picked up by your dog if he walks where these creatures frequent. Unfortunately, the older vaccines can pose risks to toy breeds. The good news there are newer vaccines on the market.

As for going into heat, it is different with every puppy but generally between 6 and 9 months of age.

Update on Georgie (now Brutus)

Hi Jacqui, hope you received my little video of Brutus. (It’s at the bottom of this post!)
I accidently touched the send button before I typed in the message. Just wanted to let you know how much he loves the blanket you sent home with him. My husband jokes that we should have called him Linus.

Michelle writes:
Brutus (Georgie) likes to be close to me, I was sitting at the table reading and he squeezed his little head between my foot and the bar on the chair and took a little nap.

On Sept. 9 Michelle wrote:
Brutus was not very happy when I blocked him from the big rocks. Thank you for letting me know about the dangers of jumping when they are pups. I was going to ask the vet tomorrow when we go for our first visit with his new vet. I don’t know why I didn’t thinly to ask you if it could harm him.

 With the photo below she wrote:  It was definitely meant for us to have the biggest and not the smallest puppy from the liter. This was snapped just before we had a discussion on why little boy can not touch my puppy unless the are sitting on the floor with Aunt Shell next to them.

Two very happy smiles. These are the shots that warm my heart. 
When Brutus is not napping on the vent (which we closed off so he won’t get sick from air blowing directly on him) he enjoys napping on his place mat.